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The Perfect Pantry's favorite cookie recipes. (Want to swap?)

Blue sea creature on a sugar cookie.

Here in my log house kitchen, we're setting up for our annual Drop In & Decorate® cookies-for-donation event this coming weekend. Over two days, more than 50 people will stop by to decorate the world's best sugar cookies for donation to nonprofit agencies serving our neighbors facing the challenges of hunger, homelessness or domestic violence.

At the same time, I know many of you are baking for your annual cookie exchanges with friends or family.

So, it seems like the perfect time to swap some of our very favorite cookie recipes, made with ingredients we always have in the pantry -- as we say here in Rhode Island, flauwah, sugah and buddah -- the cookies we'd bring to a cookie exchange.

Sweet and salty peanut chocolate chunk cookies

Why save the best for last? These sweet and salty peanut chocolate chunk cookies win every award in our house, thanks to a bit of crunchy sea salt in the dough, and every ingredient comes right from the pantry. My husband Ted and I are so completely in love with these cookies that it's unlikely you'll ever actually have them at our house, as we tend to gobble up whatever we make.

Chocolate spice cookies

I love almost any cookie that has chocolate in it, including these crackly chocolate spice cookies and ice cream chocolate chip cookies.

Honey gingerbread cookies

In addition to the dry ingredients for baking, lemon and honey are staples in the pantry, too. Like our sugar cookies, honey gingerbread cookies can be any shape -- bears are cute, aren't they? -- but traditional black and white cookies really have to be round. There might even be a law about that. Lemon-lavender cookies are round, too, because they're formed and chilled in a log, then sliced.

Espresso nut cookies

Espresso-nut cookies make an elegant after-dinner treat, especially when served with strawberries on the side. For those who don't love the taste of coffee, spice snap cookies offer a hint of warm vanilla.

Amaretti cookies

And, when you want a cookie you can dunk into a bit of Vin Santo, try these oh-so-Italian almond-flavored amaretti cookies.

Do your friends or family have an annual cookie swap? What kinds of cookies will you bring?

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Oh my...I am drooling...
What a wonderful project, Lydia ! Here's to lots of cookie love !

Ohh!! How delicious, I have never thought of swapping cookies! You have made me realise that I haven't even posted the recipe for my favourite cookie on my website. I had better get cooking :)

My favorite is oatmeal coconut cookie. Does anyone want the recipe??

Kim, thanks so much. What's better than cookie love, really?!

Gourmet, cookie swaps are a big tradition here at the holidays. Everyone brings cookies, and everyone gets to choose an assortment to bring home.

Pauline, you know I want that recipe!

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